Posts Tagged "Pitta"

Understanding the Doshas

Posted by on Jul 31, 2013

Radiant health, according to Ayurveda, is simply a state  in which you experience a zest for life and feel integrated and whole. Your appetite, digestion, and elimination are good, you breathe deeply and easily, your skin is radiant, you sleep well, and you experience the full range of human emotions in a manner that is congruent with your experiences. How each of us achieve this state of integration and wholeness, as well as how we experience physical and mental disease and suffering,  is a function of our individual and unique, by degree and manifestation, bodymind type or dosha. While...

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Using Spices in Ayurveda and Chinese Medicine to Protect Your Digestive Fire in Summer

Posted by on Jul 9, 2013

In summer we sweat and our yang energy or heat keeps getting dispersed and exhausted. On freezing cold days you feel cold, but on boiling hot days you sweat and become exhausted. In winter in every culture people eat heavy high-calorie foods, but in summer switch to lighter food. That is in part because our digestive fire weakens in summer because the yang is at the surface.Conversely, in summer, because it is so hot, we eat lots of cooling juicy food like fruit and more raw food. Raw food is cooling, because your body has to provide the fire...

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Your Ayurvedic Dosha and Mindfulness Meditation

Posted by on Jul 7, 2013

Great article in the New York Times called The Morality of Meditation about recent science research into the practice of Mindfulness Meditation. Research done by neuroscientists and psychologists into the effects of  Mindfulness meditation show “mounting scientific evidence that the practice can enhance creativity, memory and scores on standardized intelligence tests,” but more interestingly,  this study demonstrated an increased compassionate response to other people’s suffering on the part of meditators after a simple 8 week meditation course. The implications are staggering. This has been my own personal experience with both myself and people I have taught mindfulness meditation practice...

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Springtime Tea from Somalia with Cardamom and Mint

Posted by on May 3, 2013

Food and drink like language and music spreads between cultures without rules. But within any given tradition, within any given culture, its as if there are unspoken rules that govern change; creativity is allowed, but to a point. In the world of food or music, for example, once you change a thing enough it is no longer what it started out to be. This can lead to certain kinds of conformity.  For example, in my grandmother’s Russian Jewish culture there were two kinds of gefilte fish–sweet without garlic, but with sugar, and spicy, without sugar, but with black pepper...

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Daikon Radish: Detoxify and Promote Digestion

Posted by on Feb 23, 2013

Daikon Radish is a great soup or salad vegetable. It is spicy, and acts as a digestive by stimulating digestive fire, just as the small radishes that Mexicanos eat with corn and meat do, but it is more aromatic, especially when boiled, than the small radishes and not as hot. Daikon is used in Chinese Medicine Nutritional therapy to balance heavier foods that are high in harder to digest animal protein and fat, like beef or pork. Beef and pork, which are are also neutral and cool in natural temperature, easily produce toxic dampness when eaten in excess, because...

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Ayurveda and Fruits: Match Food to Your Dosha and the Season

Posted by on Feb 14, 2013

What foods match your dosha? Fruits are naturally sweet sour and refreshing. Some fruits, like apples, also have an astringent or drying property, depending on variety, macs more than fiji, for example. Your mouth feels a bit dry after a bite of apple, or quite dry after a bite of unripe banana–this is the astringent flavor. Pomegranates are another great example of this, as are  persimmon, especially if not perfectly ripe. Some fruit are more sweet than sour, like ripe figs, dates,  bananas, some fruits are especially cooling, like watermelon, ripe bananas or oranges. Some fruits can be less...

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Grass Fed Milk, Cultured Butter, Butter in Ayurveda

Posted by on Jan 1, 2013

If you eat butter, let it be from cows that exercised in the fresh air and sun and ate grass in summer pastures, not soybeans and grains in barns.  I really like the Organic Valley brand Pasture Butter (and also Grass Fed Milk. )  http://www.organicvalley.coop/products/butter/pasture/  As the cows graze on grass over the long summer days, they produce a milk that  provides higher levels of vitamins, CLA (conjugated linoleic acid), and balanced omega-3 and omega-6 fats. And because they are out in the fields, their milk has the flavor of the terrain, like single origin chocolate or wine, what’s...

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Instant Relaxation Stress Busters

Posted by on Dec 6, 2012

Stress busters you can reach for any time. Dial down stress before an important meeting,calm yourself while driving, keep cool when faced with situations or people you find irritating or scary. These proven breathing, body-scanning exercises work. One Minute Relaxer Place your hand on your belly beneath your navel so you can feel it rise and fall as you breathe. Take a long slow deep in-breath through you nose. Notice the sound of the air in your throat. Hold you breath for a count of three. Exhale forcefully through your mouth with pursed lips. Repeat 5 times. Two Minute...

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Juiced Watermelon with Lime, Ginger, and Salt

Posted by on Aug 29, 2012

Alternative to Iced Drinks in Hot Weather Protect the Agni/ Yang in Summer: Juiced Watermelon with Lime, Ginger, and Salt The other day was quite hot (for SD!), and I swam at the beach after walking down from the top of Torrey Pines, and got home overheated and thirsty. I could still feel the sun hot on my head, even though I had worn a hat. I needed a lot of fluid and to cool down healthfully. An excellent alternative to iced beverages in hot conditions like that is juiced melon, especially watermelon. I juiced mine with fresh ginger...

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Summer Raw Beet, Sardine, and Pasta Salad

Posted by on Jul 8, 2012

Summer is a time when even cold dry (Vata) types or cold damp (Kapha) types can have little more raw foods. One of the ways to make raw foods more compatible for cold types with weaker digestive energy (Agni/Spleen Qi) is to have it in small amounts with other foods that stimulate digestion.   Necessity is the mother of invention. Today I was hungry, lazy, and the cupboard was bare. I had some leftover pasta, a tin of sardines, a can of chickpeas, a bunch of scallions and one lone beetroot in my frig. So I made a pasta...

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Hormonal Acne Natural Treatment with Ayurveda and Chinese Medicine/Acupuncture

Posted by on Jun 18, 2012

Hormonal Acne Natural Treatment with Ayurveda and Chinese Medicine/Acupuncture In a certain sense most acne is hormonal, as it is often associated with increased levels of the hormone testosterone, in both men and women. Testosterone is made in the adrenals and the ovaries, as well as the testes. And it is the adrenal glands that are involved in the fight or flight stress response. That is why we often see the appearance of acne during periods of high stress. There are other factors besides testosterone and inadequate stress management skills. A Diet rich in sugar, processed foods and unhealthy fats...

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Ayurveda Summer Tea–Ayush Brand ProPita Tea

Posted by on Jun 8, 2012

Ayurvedic Summer Tea One of my favorite Ayurveda Summer Teas is Ayush Brand ProPita Tea. This is a naturally cooling tea that is mildly relaxing. Because it combines energetically cooling herbs and spices like Tulusi, Sandalwood, and Cardamon,  with sweet spices like Licorice and Cinnamon,  ProPita tea pacifies Pitta, which is the dominant dosha of late Spring and early Summer. What’s great is that at the same time, the mild pungent qualities of Cardamon, Tulsi, and Cinnamon  promote Agni/Digestive Fire,  so this tea is safe to drink in large quantities, unlike iced teas and iced beverages, which damage Agni....

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Peppermint and Gotu Kola Ayurvedic Cooling Summer Tea

Posted by on Jun 2, 2012

Cooling Teas of Summer: Peppermint and Centella Asiatica (Brahmi, Gotu Kola, Pennywort) There are lots of ways to hydrate and cool off in summer, without damaging the Agni/digestive fire/Spleen Qi which is actually weaker in the hot weather than in the cold weather. In cold weather the Agni fires up in the core to keep us warm, but in the hot weather it is dispersed to the surface as we sweat. That is why we can eat heavier food in the winter than in the summer. So it is important to be careful about too much cooling food in...

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Curried Quinoa Super Food: Pacify Kapha in Late Winter/Early Spring

Posted by on Apr 11, 2012

Curried Quinoa Super Food: Pacify Kapha in Late Winter/Early Spring The ancient grain of the Incas, Quinoa has a delicate, nutty, slightly bitter flavor and the lightest texture of all grains.  This combination of bitter taste and light texture make it an ideal grain for Kapha types and Kapha imbalances such as excess weight, sluggishness, and issues of phlegm.  And while Quinoa is excellent for elevated Kapha  any time of year, it’s especially true  in Late Winter/Early Spring when Kapha predominates.  Quinoa  is also a very good choice for Pitta imbalances that benefit from the bitter taste and light...

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Dandelion and Chicory Greens: Vegan Fast Food

Posted by on Jan 28, 2012

My idea of fast food: real food, made easily. Too many of my vegetarian and vegan friends are what I call “grilled cheese vegetarians.” Though they avoid meat, they also seem to avoid green vegetables and eat lots of bread and soy cheese or vegan sausages. I was on a meditation retreat a few years ago in Quebec, and it was surprising: lots of beans and grains and dairy, too, even ice cream, but zero green vegetables. Chinese medicine says: Protein for strength, Grains for energy, Green Vegetables to keep it all clean. Luckily, walking around the extensive uncut...

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